Dear Apple

Dear Apple,

You do some things well. I like your philosophy on computing. You make stuff simple, streamlined, and hard to screw up (i.e. ready for mainstream consumption). Your products and programs have polish and fit. You don't rush out half-assed things (I'll just clear my throat and look over at my iPhone 4's antenna at this point).

People like well-thought-out things, and your market share has grown as a result. Well done. But I foresee one tiny little problem that I believe will ultimately keep you from being the Microsoft of the new millennium.

Your computers are a horrible deal.

For example, I'm writing this from an ASUS laptop. It cost $600. The keyboard is a little flimsy, but it has 4 gigs of ram, a 500 GB hard drive, and the new Intel Core i3 processor.

Your cheapest offering is $1000. It's plastic like mine, has 2 gigs of ram, a 250 GB hard drive and the old Intel Core 2 Duo processor. Cutting edge stuff... in 2006.

Please notice how all the specs of your computer are half, but the price, interestingly enough, is almost double. To get an Apple laptop with stats comparable to my own, I'd have to pay $1800. Ridiculous.

"But Mr. Braff," you're probably whining in a thin, reedy voice, "the Macbook Pro is made from aircraft-grade aluminum."

Who gives a shit? I can't download pictures of Lolcats onto a hunk of aluminum. Those of us who aren't planning on melting down our laptops to make a Cessna any time soon buy a computer for its... ability to compute. Package it in a giant turd for all I care.

"OOOOooooohhh, look at me, I'm Apple. I just sprinkled 256 MB of RAM and a 10 gig hard drive into a Louis Vuitton suitecase- $4000 please."

Conversely, the iPhone 4 costs a whopping $200. You somehow conned AT&T into subsidizing the hell out of it, and BOOM- everyone wins. Consumers get a slick, do-it-all phone at a reasonable price, you dominate the mobile marketplace, and that fat tub of lard AT&T somehow gets to hove its way onward, wheezing into the next decade under the impression that it's still a viable telecom company.

AT&T's pretty gullible, maybe you can get them to subsidize all your products.

Sebastian Braff


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